Saturday, March 31, 2007

And now for some good news [Edited later that night]

And the good news is:

The boy has gotten into George Washington University and Boston University.

The bad news is, I can’t imagine how we would pay for either.

Rock On J!

And more good news:
My friend Dolly noticed my hair cut.
My other friend Louise said it was "Sassy"
some days, it is the little stuff that makes us smile.


Not just on the kumputer, back in the blogosphere

OK, I have been very neglectful. I was working on a database project that was literally & figuratively a pain in the neck! When I escaped from that, I didn't want to do anything else on the computer. Sorry.
Haven't had much time to work a blog entry, I won't spend any more words on how much I hate access & databases, so I did a quick steal of the Meme from Sarah Louise. I'm not even sure what a meme is, but I did it.

Favorite Color: Indigo
Favorite Food: Lobster Newburg that my husband on Christmas eve in a snowstorm
Favorite Month: What kind of a question is that?
Favorite Song: Gnarls Barkley’s Crazy (Though I love the Patsy Cline song as well)
Favorite Movie: umm, I’m not sure. I like a lot of different ones. I’ll get back to you
Favorite Sport: Canoeing, It is time to start thinking about our annual Father’s Day trip (hubby & the kids, not my father. Though I have invited him, in fact, he’s the person who introduced me to canoeing when I was a kid in Florida.
Favorite Season: Spring. Hope springs eternal.
Favorite Day of the week: I’m currently unemployed, so they all run together
Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: Ben and Jerry's Cherry Garcia. Dark Chocolate, sour cherries, what’s not to love?
Favorite Time of Day: Nap time, though I don’t do that enough!

Current Mood: undecided
Current Taste: coffee
Current Clothes: Very unglamorous. I was embarrassed when I wrote it down
Current Desktop: B&W pic of me & hubby smooching under my veil on our wedding day.
Current Toenail Color: blank
Current Time: 10:59 am. When did it get so late? I woke up early enough. ARGH!!!
Current Surroundings: My office, in desperate need of cleaning & dusting
Current Thoughts: Ugh, I’ve got to get something on my blog. I’m way behind & I want to go and see my friend Dolly who is in town for way too short a visit.

First Best Friend: Ginny
First Kiss: 8th grade, Owen
First Screen Name: either kalyme or monkskid. I don’t remember which was first
First Pet: Technically a hermit crab, but I'm not sure if it was ever alive. Later we got a dog
First Piercing: ears, when I was 12
First Crush: Grape
First CD: Les Miserables

Last Cigarette: 1994 I smoked to stay away during a tech
Last Drink: Last Night a chai tea liquor that I put in my coffee
Last Car Ride: Hubby-Poo drove me home from a friend’s house last night
Last Kiss: This morning, Hubby-Poo
Last Movie Seen: Dreamgirls, with the girl
Last Phone Call: on the phone w/ Dad right now
Last CD Played: Pure Funk Volume 2

Have You Ever Dated One Of Your Best Guy/Girl Friends: No, but I went to the prom with my best friend. We always thought about dating, but we generally thought about it at different times. Now my husband is my best friend. Some days :)
Have You Ever Broken the Law: No Comment.
Have You Ever Been Arrested: Yes, I don’t recommend it.
Have You Ever Skinny Dipped: Heck yeah!
Have You Ever Been on TV: Yes. I was in a Mr. Donut commercial when I was in High School
Have You Ever Kissed Someone You Didn’t Know: Yes, New Year’s Eve, 1999. I kissed the brother of an acquaintance (friend of a friend)

Thing You’re Wearing: wedding band
Thing You’ve Done Today: made plans for Easter. Sort of.
Thing You Can Hear Right Now: the click of my keyboard and some traffic
Thing You Can’t Live Without: Sleep!
Thing You Do When You’re Bored: waste time on the computer or read

1. Bed
2. Kitchen, to make coffee
3. Dining Room, to drink coffee
4. Pittsburgh to visit Sarah Louise (& steal this Meme)

1. Coll
2. Dolly
3. Some days my husband, some days, it’s better to keep it to myself

1. Manicure or Pedicure: Pedicure
2. The book or the movie? Generally the book. If I get a chance, I like to see the movie, but I don’t get out much

1. Dive through a waterfall. I did that when I took a cruise for my 30th birthday & want to do it again!

Ok, neck is starting to hurt already. got to get off the computer!


Tuesday, March 27, 2007

It started so simple... (or an introduction for SL's Readers)

me*my flower bed*my niece & nephew*a small vase I made* Hubby-Poo*his kids* girl-scout cookies*sushi

It started simply enough. Cousin Sarah Louise & I were discussing books. She said, come on over to my blog, I usually talk about what I'm reading there. So one day, in the dreariness of February I popped over to say "Hi," in order to say "Hi" I had to name myself. So since my favorite little redhead (the precocious 6 year-old daughter of one of my best friends) had renamed me Kiki once upon a time, I started with that. I have spent a lot of time in the kitchen the past 9 months, so that is where that came in. So with a name, I said "Hi."

Once I had a name, I thought, why not give this a shot. I'm not nearly as forthcoming about parts of my life as SL. I have had a very difficult year, but really don't want to write about that. I talk about it enough, with my husband, my friends, my family, my therapist, my lawyer, and total strangers who think they know me. So I thought here I would talk about things that I'm doing that are for the most part the lighter side of life. Oh, the occasional rant will show up, but hey, it's my blog, I can talk about whatever I want.

The "Kitchen" part started off as a pure function of needing to eat & not being able to afford to go anywhere. I have always done a lot of cooking in my house, though my husband was primary cook for a short time, before we were married. He will still cook sometimes, but he says I'm much better at it then him. Sure honey, you'll say anything to get dinner on the table. We enjoy good food from a lot of different cultures. I don't eat red meat, so I have to be creative to avoid the chicken-fish-chicken-fish rut. We have compromised with turkey thigh, which I have found a number of creative ways to cook that become more "meat like" for him and costs very little. We still do the chicken-fish-shrimp thing a lot, but during the winter I was also creative with some soups & stews. I will say that 95% of what I cook is edible. I have completely thrown away a few recipes, but since I tend to improvise a lot, there isn't really anything to throw away. I am often inspired by other recipes, and will sometimes follow them to the letter. Ok, maybe not to the letter, but to a reasonable facsimile. So anyway, if I'm talking about dinner, or some other food item and you want to know what is in it or how it is made, feel free to ask, I'll do my best to replicate it. I also like wine to go with my dinner, sadly it isn't currently in the budget.

The "Clay" part. I am a novice potter. I love the clay & creating things with it. I am very ok at this, but am still working on it. I have found clay to be a wonderful therapy, but have been away from it for about a month due to other life interruptions. I hope to get back to the wheel very soon!

I like to take pictures, but I never have my camera when I want it and am terrible about posting them. Currently on my computer, I have all the pictures from our (HP & Me) sushi making adventure. The grapes that are currently the background of this blog (that SL doesn't care for), are a photo taken by me when I first moved in my house, before the hubby & kids when it was just me, a big house (3-storey brownstone) and my back yard. I have a 3 picture series of those grapes framed on my wall.

I love my yard, with the grape arbor, and the path of peonies. In the summer the honeysuckle drips over the fence and the lilac and wisteria fight for space. The small garden shot on my header (between me & my masked ((but still unbelievably adorable)) niece & nephew) is my front flower bed. When I moved in it was an ivy bed. I dug it up (with some help from a friend) and planted. It has lavender, Monarda, black-eyed susans, tulips (from Holland, MI) in the spring, mums in the fall, some snap-dragons, a little spider-wort, some other little flower that I don't remember the name of, and some delphinium (because I love the color) but since my shade tree had to be severely trimmed after a truck hit it last summer, I don't know that that will return. I love the look of it, but am a little lazy on the maintenance. (see previous post on being all talk)

Occasionally I will talk about random silly things that I find on the world wide web. For some reason, I become intrigued by random consumer items. I call them the "I Want One" things, but I'm not sure that I really want a lot of these things. Except the Viking stove!

So welcome to anyone who stops by. I cleaned up & put on a new "outfit" so I could be all spiffy for Sarah Louise's friends. (I didn't want to embarrass her) Although, she liked me just the way I was. Isn't it great to have people like that in your life?


Sunday, March 25, 2007

Spring is sprunging!

It was a lovely spring day today hooray! Yesterday's rain went away, it was cool, but warm if you were in the sun and a nice day to be outside.

Hubby Poo & I spent a few hours sitting outside. We pulled a couple weeds & tried to unearth some of the sprouting bulbs from underneath the dead leaves. A small bunch of crocus were up waiting for us to join them in the sun.

We mostly just talked about what we should be doing to the yard & garden. We are big on talk, short on cash gumption action. I was supposed to get an herb garden for my birthday. The idea was that we would plan it out & build the foundation for it so it would be ready for planting this spring. Well, we are still talking about it.

Him: "We need bricks. Where can we get some free bricks"
Me: "Look, here on craigslist. Free bricks in exchange for helping dismantle a chimney. Only about 45 minutes away."
Him: "Can you get a free truck too? How are we going to get the bricks here?"
Me: "You only asked me to find bricks. I didn't realize I was in charge of transportation also."
Him: "Well we can't put them in the convertible, not enough room and my car won't go that far with out breaking down."
Me: "hmmm. What do you want for dinner?"
And back to the drawing board we go.

So now it is the herb garden. Plus the pergola is cracking from the vines taking over and the weather attacking and so forth.

We thought about oiling the furniture. It is a cheap teak-like wood that I got from Target.
Him: "Gosh this furniture is starting to show it's age."
Me: " yeah, well, it was pretty cheap. It probably would have been happier if we brought it in for the winter"
Him: "How come we didn't do that? We were going to bring it in, sand it, oil it. Give it some TLC. Why didn't we?"
Me: "Have you cleaned a spot yet?"
Him: "Aren't you going to get started on dinner?"
And so our outdoor furniture is cracked & faded. At least we talked about doing something. And admitting your furniture has a problem is half the battle!

Dinner tonight. The World Famous, Beer Can Chicken! Woo-Hoo. I like to stick a can of beer up a chicken's posterior end! I through together a few herbs & spices , gave that chicken a massage & then sent it to the grill sauna for a little steam and voilá it's dinner. Along with hubby-poo's famous mashed potatoes (famous mostly because I can convince him to make them!) and some absolutely fantastic Guacamole also made my dearest Hubby-poo! Left over chicken will go into chicken Korma and left over mashed potatoes, well, let's just say we didn't need to worry about them. And a good dinner was had by all :)


Friday, March 23, 2007

oooh it's Friday

It's Friday. I'm not sure what that really means. I don't have a job right now, so every day is kind of the same. I'm either busy or bored. (Always feast or famine in my world, but oh well). We have the girl child with us this weekend. We are picking her up some time this afternoon and we have a whole weekend to torture her. She was grounded this week, I don't know for how long--I don't think that has been determined yet. I asked her how it was going and if it really affected her life, she said "Not really." When we were kids, we were grounded and that was it. (Well, not me, I was a good child, really...) Now how much punishment is it? She still has a computer in her room, along with a TV that has a DVD player. When she gets home from school, she goes on the computer, just like she did before she was grounded. Her father & I were talking about different forms of torture last night, but since we through out the idea of stringing her up by her ankles, we'll have to get more creative. I personally liked the idea that she had to post a myspace blog on why lying is bad and email it to all of her friends. But really, as disciplining goes, we are collectively a group of wimps. The kids are both good kids, and we trust them, or at least did until one of them lied. I'm not sure if she realizes what she did to that trust. It is going to be interesting for a little while.

In other excitement, I got a hair cut! Whoopie! It has been 6 Months (almost to the day) since I've gotten a hair cut. Partly due to disinterest on my part, and partly due to disinterest on the part of my finances. The best part was that the hair cut was FREE! YAHOO! My husband's ex (is that "HEX" or "HEW"?) had a promotional gift certificate that was for the place I went (she didn't realize that) and she didn't want it, because let's face it. Once we find some one we like, we tend to stick with them. I shopped around for a few years before I decided this was where I was going to stay.
Anyway. I got my hair cut. YIPPEE! I normally go in & say, give a little trim, cut off the dead stuff... I went in, looked at Jen (my hairstylist) and said: "Maybe we can cut it to about your length" So she chopped about 3 1/2 inches off the back and gave me a cute little bob. I felt so 00 sassy.
Then, nobody noticed. I thought it was pretty different, but really, no one noticed. My husband (who must get his hair cut every 4 weeks, and gets PMSish and cranky in the days preceding his cut "my hair is too long...") knew I was getting it cut, I called him afterwards and told him that I cut off 3 inches, then I got home and he spent 1/2 an hour going on about himself. Some one I hadn't seen in a few weeks kind of stared at me like he thought something was different, but couldn't place it. He also gets forgiveness points because I almost always have it up or back when I see him. The step-daughter? I said, I got my hair cut! She said. Oh, I thought something was different. Sigh. So much for feeling Sassy!

Well, off to JazzFest!


Tuesday, March 20, 2007

still here, kind of

Why is it this blog doesn't post itself? I am quite convinced that some of the others do, but not this one.

OK, a few pics:

It's a Box!
Oops That's not the one I was thinking of. But a quick review. Thoroughly OK, but the damn valve leaked & was a big pain in the neck! And left a sticky fridge. Yuk.

Ok, let's try this again!
It's a Box!

Yes this time, it really was a box. Addressed to ME! (I'm Kiki)
From the sweet & loving Sarah Louise. Ok, she pretends to be sweet & loving, but really she is an enabler. I have an addiction. She knows about it, I have publicly admitted it, but what did I find in the box?
No, I'm not addicted to green easter grass. (Or any other kind, despite rumours to the contrary). My addiction is deeper than that. Literally, I had to dig deep into the green grass to reach my addiction.
Yes, I am addicted to Girl Scout Cookies!
I am not the only one. It is a well documented addiction. And by well, I mean the documentation was superbly done by Marc Acito on NPR. Finding Binge Absolution in a Do-Si-Do Ok, I'm sure that is getting old, because I have posted it a few times, but really it's true!

And in other news: What's for Dinner? Well, let's go into the dinner closet & see:

Tonight's dinner, was a yummy & delish Thai Shrimp Curry. There was garlic, shallot, ginger, green onion, onion, tomato, red curry paste, shrimp, basil, lime, 1/2 a serrano, coconut milk, and I don't remember what else was in there, but it was Good! Served over plain white rice, with a salad.

Last Night's dinner. An almost disaster, but pulled off to be another fine production. (Recipe inspired by this)I marinated a turkey thigh over night in Yuengling Black & Tan (if you are over 21, click for more on this), dijon mustard, rosemary, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, olive oil & a few other odds & ends. The plan was for my darling husband to throw it in a crock-pot and add a couple taters towards the end of the day. He forgot. Maybe I should have "forgotten" to feed him? But no. I went to PLAN B. I pulled the thigh from the marinade, put in a dutch oven (skin side down) w/ another 1/2 a beer, covered it and put that in a 375 oven for about an hour. Then I took it out, flipped it "skin side" up, removed the lid and let it cook for another 20-30 minutes. Hubby's penance for forgetting to put it in the crock pot was that he made mashed potatoes. I boiled down the beer, added some Maggi Seasoning (known in our house as "gravy helper") some butter & some flour and we had a tantalizing taste sensation. A little creamed spinach & it's a meal.
(an aside, I didn't realize that Maggi was Asian until I found the link hmm. It is tasty, I'll give it that)

And my final food posting, was the Friday night dinner treat. We braved the Snow & Ice and got to the farmer's market before they gave up for the storm and picked up some fresh scallops. I made a thick sauce with a little orange/mango juice from the fridge, some soy sauce, maybe some fresh ginger, or some ground ginger, or possibly some ginger shrub. Definitely a little bourbon(Did I have some of the bourbon as well? Mayyyyyyybe), and a spoonful or so of orange marmalade and possibly some Pickapeppa sauce, maybe a sprinkle of crushed red pepper though I don't completely remember. I would think there was some other things in there, but I neglected to write any of it down. I was making it up as I went a long.. The scallops themselves were seared in clarified butter. Your scallop cooking tip of the day is SEAR them. You can grill them also. broiling is ok, but really sear or grill. Trust me. Never, ever saute them. Scallops taste best & retain their sweetness only if you leave them alone. So put your pan on Med Hi, clarify your butter (clarified butter has a higher smoke point once you remove all that milk fat) when the pan is nice and hot gently place the scallop in the butter. Let it sizzle, then gently flip(tongs are best) and sizzle the other side. Gently remove, directly to the dinner plate & enjoy immediately.
Anyway, the scallops were served with a green salad and ginger-coconut rice. And a good meal was had by all!

Now I know why I'm so bad at posting. I'm slow at it. Oh well. Bon Appétit!


Saturday, March 17, 2007


Ok, I really will put a real post on here. I promise. I wouldn't want to let down my faithful readers. Both of them.
It is REALLY cold right now. It was 80 here on Wednesday & yesterday we got several inches of snow. 4-6 I think. It is cold & wet & really pretty yucky!

I am trying to return to my regularly scheduled life. Thomas the Train derailed my life for a couple weeks and now I'm overwhelmed with things that I should have already taken care of. I have to organize a database, get in touch with volunteers for another project, pay bills, find my closet floor, do laundry, catch-up on email get some resumes out AND I've signed up to volunteer for the Berks Jazz Fest, going on right now. I couldn't really see that I was needed for anything in particular today. I'm sure if I was around, there would be work for me, but I decided that I want one more day of being in my house before I start spending days & hours away from it again. Unfortunately it is really cold in my house and all I want to do is crawl under the covers until spring comes back! But then the to-do would be even more overwhelming and I'm not sure I can handle that.


Sunday, March 11, 2007

Do I really have a Blog?

Do I have a blog? This has my name on it, but I'm not sure I remember having one. Oh well, I'll have to look into it.

What time is it? I'm really confused. I also only had a couple hours of sleep so that doesn't help.

I really think. I don't really remember what I really think. I was going to say something, but it went out of my head as quickly as it went in. So for now, I am convinced that I really do think, I'm just not ready to share what those thoughts are.

Song of the Day:

If I Only Had A Brain

I could while away the hours
Conferrin' with the flowers
Consultin' with the rain
And my head, I'd be scratchin'
While my thoughts were busy hatchin'
If I only had a brain.

I'd unravel ev'ry riddle
For any individ'le
In trouble or in pain

With the thoughts you'd be thinkin'
You could be another Lincoln,
If you only had a brain.

Oh, I could tell you why
The ocean's near the shore,
I could think of things I never thunk before
And then I'd sit and think some more.

I would not be just a nuffin'
My head all full of stuffin'
My heart all full of pain.
I would dance and be merry
Life would be a ding-a-derry
If I only had a brain--Whoa!


Tuesday, March 6, 2007

shhhhhhhhhhh, or get off the flippin phone.

My dear Hubby Poo had morning meetings, and I'm not delving into the wardrobe world of Thomas until after lunch. Well I am at a University (or at least a satellites campus of one).

With a lovely brand new library attached to the lovely brand new Theatre. Sounds like a lovely place to sit & do some work. Maybe send out a resume or two, catch-up on blogs & emails. But

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there is nothing lovely about the inane yammering of the rude teenager who sat down about 30' away. She has so far hassled her friend about studying, called her boyfriend on the phone about giving blood--and scheduling it around a social agenda, called her mother to repeat the story about blowing the fuse while blow-drying her hair and called a friend to not only repeat both conversations, but also tell her friend about the in depth article in the magazine she is reading about Patrick some-body's new twin boys. McCutie & McCuddly. Are they going for McNuggets later? As if hearing her inane is not bad enough, she also has her phone turned up as loud as possible so I was able to hear that her friend needs to go to the bathroom. Really, I didn't need to know that.

Earlier there were young men obviously discussing classwork and reviewing for a quiz, that didn't bother me a bit. Of course, I didn't hear every detail and they pretty much kept to their focus and left. When did it become OK to talk loudly on a cell phone in the library? When did it become out of fashion for some lovely librarian to come by and give a stern Shhhhh! when people cross the line of conversational and obnoxious? I will admit that my phone is with me (as it usually is) but it is on vibrate and depending on who calls I will either send it to voice mail or answer in hush tones and let the caller know that I am in the library. Other people have spoken on the phone in the library, but I have not heard ANY detail--let alone EVERY detail-- because they have at least had the good sense to use the hush tones that a library usually warrants.

I have other rants about respect for others and cell phone etiquette and other such things, but this is what is annoying me at this instant so this is what you get. I am now going to pack up my computer & see if I can find some place quiet. Like a phone booth.


Sunday, March 4, 2007

still here, kind of

So I've been reminded of how tiring stagehand work is--especially when topped w/ an hour+ commute each way.

I made it through the first week, and have begun week two. The week that the days will start to become 12 -14 hour days instead of the 8-10 hour days I've seen so far.

Other than my feet hurting immensely by the end of the day and I'm too tired to do much else other than work (read: short blogs if any unless I get a break in the day and have my computer) I've been hanging in there. It has been kind of fun to do some of the stuff & see the magic again from the trenches, though there has also been a lot of standing around waiting for someone to make a decision which becomes quite enervating.

At some point I may post some pictures, we'll see.

From the kitchen stand point, my Jambalaya turned out quite well. Especially considering I had a minor panic attack while cooking it and didn't know if it would be made at all. I also made Red beans & rice, mostly in the crock pot this week. They also turned out pretty good even though they almost ended up in the trash because of a series of mishaps like forgetting to turn the crock-pot and such.

Yesterday was my day off (yes, I went to the blasted grocery store) and Hubby-Poo and I got together and made our first sushi. We had fun massaging the rice & clapping the water off our hands & trying to get the right roll on our maki & rice mush on the nigiri. All in all it turned out pretty well. We had a good time and I have pictures that will be posted at some future date.

so enough of the boring blog and I'm off to veg.


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